Harlan: Mavs relying so heavily on threes is 'spinning the roulette wheel'

Luka Doncic
Photo credit Tom Pennington / Staff / Getty Images

The revamped Golden State Warriors arrived to American Airlines Center with brooms in hand for Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals, but they didn't get the chance to use them. Facing a sweep, the Dallas Mavericks staved off elimination on their home court Tuesday, knocking down 20 three-pointers in a 119-109 win to force a Game 5. And not only did it rain threes in the arena -- there was a 16-minute delay in the second half due to a leak in the roof.

Behind another laudable performance from Luka Doncic, who scored a team-high 30 points with 14 boards and nine assists, Dallas recorded its 11th playoff game with at least 15 threes -- the most in a single postseason in NBA history. The barrage of shots beyond the arc couldn't have come at a more opportune time for the Mavericks, as their season was on the line. But depending on the three at this stage is too risky, according to NBA on TNT voice Kevin Harlan.

"That whole philosophy has washed across the NBA and it'd seem that you're either on or off. That's a very precarious road to travel -- and Dallas has been traveling it," Harlan told The DA Show on Wednesday. "Dallas is just beginning the process of turning competitive again. In all reality, they probably shouldn't be here... But they rely a lot on the threes. And as we saw with Houston when James Harden was there, you live by the three and you die by the three.

"And I think Golden State has almost gone the other way. They were a team in that 'three-point model,' but they've now gone to more mid-range shooting... Last night, they just took on an incredibly hot three-point shooting team. And there's not a team that would've beaten them -- it happens about once every four games. And that's spinning the roulette wheel. I can't believe [teams will] continue relying on the three. It's proven it doesn't work, in the long-term."

Dallas -- which earned the West's fourth seed with a 52-30 record -- will play Game 5 against Golden State on Thursday at Chase Center (9 p.m. ET tip-off). According to FiveThirtyEight projections, the Mavs have a 10-percent chance to reach the NBA Finals for the first time since 2011, as no team in NBA history has ever overcome an 0-3 deficit in a best-of-seven playoff series.

The entire NBA conversation between Harlan and DA can be accessed in the audio player above.

You can follow The DA Show on Twitter @DAonCBS and @CBSSportsRadio, and Tom Hanslin @TomHanslin.